All photos and text by Jack Rothman
All rights reserved. No photo may be copied or duplicated without written permission.

Copyright 2014

Updated 4/14/14

Located in the Bronx, New York, City Island is a small island, approximately one mile long and a quarter mile wide. City Island is surrounded by Eastchester Bay on one side and Long Island Sound on the other. Its bridge attaches to a roadway adjacent to Pelham Bay Park, New York City's largest park. In this area, and in the waters and wetlands, in and around City Island, many bird species thrive. Here, several and varied migratory birds are found. This website was created to help study, appreciate, and protect all the birds of this area.

Save Forests and Save Birds

Ancient Boreal forests are being cut down for 
Toilet Tissue, Paper Towels and Catalogs!

City Island Birds
Since 2007

Birding Advocacy

More than 80,000 people have viewed this page.

Welcome to City Island Birds. I created this website because this area of New York City is little known and underutilized by birdwatchers and other nature lovers. Pelham Bay Park, with its woods and wetlands is a critical stopover and nesting area to many migratory species.

Photos and Results of Our Past Walks
Previous Walks 2007-2009
Early Spring Migration Walk- March 27
May Migration Walk- May 2
May 23 Migration Walk
Father’s Day Walk-June 20 
Sunset Cruise- June 28
Labor Day Walk - September 5
Fall Walk- October 30
Winter Bird Walk- January 9
First Spring Walk- April 17
Easter Walk- April 24
Split Rock-Mother’s Day Walk- May 7 
Turtle Cove “Watch”- June 26
Raptor and Waterfowl Walk- Nov. 27
Owl Walk- March 24
Owlet Walk April 15, 2012
Spring “Migration Madness” Walk- May 6
Clapper Rail Walk- May 27   
Fall Migration Walk- Sept. 23, 2012
Migration Walk- October 14, 2012
Last Minute Barred Owl Walk- Dec. 9, 2012
Bronx Brooklyn Walk- January 12
Spring Migration Walk- May 5
Three Club Walk-  August 24
Fall Migration Walk 2013Previous_Birdwalks.htmlEarly_Spring_Migration_Walk.htmlMay_Migration_Walk.htmlMay_Migration_Walk.htmlFathers_Day_Walk.htmlSunset_Cruise.htmlLabor_Day_Walk.htmlFall_Walk_2010.htmlWinter_Bird_Walk.htmlEarly_Spring_Migration_Walk.htmlEaster_Walk.htmlSplit_Rock-_Mothers_Day_Walk.htmlTurtle_Cove_%22Watch%22.htmlRaptor_and_Waterfowl_Walk.htmlOwl_Walk.htmlOwlet_Walk.htmlMigration_Madness.htmlClapper_Rail_walk.htmlFall_Migration_Walk.htmlFall_Migration_2012.htmlbarred_Owl_Walk.htmlBronx_Brooklyn_Walk.htmlSpring_Migration_2013.htmlThree_Club_Walk.htmlFall_Migration_2013.htmlshapeimage_10_link_0shapeimage_10_link_1shapeimage_10_link_2shapeimage_10_link_3shapeimage_10_link_4shapeimage_10_link_5shapeimage_10_link_6shapeimage_10_link_7shapeimage_10_link_8shapeimage_10_link_9shapeimage_10_link_10shapeimage_10_link_11shapeimage_10_link_12shapeimage_10_link_13shapeimage_10_link_14shapeimage_10_link_15shapeimage_10_link_16shapeimage_10_link_17shapeimage_10_link_18shapeimage_10_link_19shapeimage_10_link_20shapeimage_10_link_21shapeimage_10_link_22shapeimage_10_link_23shapeimage_10_link_24


Barnacle Goose at Orchard Beach

Jack Rothman


Traveling and Birding the Amazon

Several people have requested information about our trip to the Amazon.

Birding Interest- Past Articles

Important and Useful

The Wild Bird Fund   (Animal Rehabber)

New York Tide Chart

Urban Park Rangers

NY State Parks

Birdcast (Migration Reports)


City Island?
Pelham Bay Park Map
City Island Community
Directions Here
City Island Birding ClubCIB_Club.html
The Kazimiroff Nature Trail of Hunter Island
You may have noticed the new signs posted along the paths on Hunter island. The numbers correlate to different features of the “Island.” If you link below, you can find out what each sign post means. Dr. Kazimiroff was a noted Bronx naturalist. The trail marked in his honor winds through the largest and most natural of all of NYC parks. This area was once hunting and fishing grounds and the site of huge mansions. To find out more, print and bring the guide with you on your next walk. Kazimiroff Trail.pdf


Eastern Phoebes are back! These early migrants are among the earliest to arrive.

Black-capped Chickadees have been scarce around here this winter. I finally saw some flocks today. Maybe the really cold weather kept them further south.

There are owlets! I saw one and there are reports of two. Mom is very skittish and flies when anyone approaches. In a week or so we can get better looks.

Finally Spring-like Weather and Birds Begin Arriving

If you’ve been listening, there’s been quite an upturn of bird sounds in the morning and it will only increase. Eastern Phoebes are here, Golden-crowned Kinglets are here. Look around at the many Robins, Grackles, Sparrows and Jays. Bird activity is increasing each day and it will only improve. Thank goodness winter is finally over! Time to get out there!

If you’re not familiar with how your computer or smartphone can help you be a better and more successful birder, you should read my little primer, link here.

If you need or want a new pair of binoculars, you might want to begin here. Binoculars have really changed in the last few years. You can get a fantastic pair for a few hundred dollars and a really good pair for less than $200. Years ago, there wasn’t nearly as much choice. You should link here for ratings.


I’ve seen a flyover of a few Osprey and reports of them on top of the NY Central tower at Bartow-Pell Circle

A few weeks ago we attended the San Diego Birding Festival. After 8 months of drought, it decided to rain on our festival. On one field trip we encountered this spectacular double rainbow, as we birded the Anzo Borrego Desert, near San Diego. As it turned out, we only lost one day of birding and spent it visiting some fine museums. For the remaining days of the festival we saw many great western species. It sure beat the NYC cold and snow!

This is a Horned Grebe in near breeding plumage. He’s was in Eastchester Bay, opposite Turtle Cove for a week or so but I believe they are gone now. Most of the wintering ducks are also gone.

Rusty Blackbirds, a threatened species can usually be found near the Turtle Cove Driving Range, often in mixed flocks of Grackles, Red-winged Blackbirds and Starlings.


It was glorious Spring day and fun to see everyone. There were approximately thirty walkers who had great view of the owlet pictured below. In addition, we had extended views of both Mom and Pop who were nearby. Other highlights of the walk were the other great species we saw down at Turtle Cove, which included the Red-headed Woodpecker.

Link here for more photos.